Banana is a common horticultural crop in the Sunderbans region though there are hardly any cultivation of proven commercial elite varieties that can yield much higher incomes per unit of area under the crop.

In West Africa two rice species (Oryza glaberrima Steud. and Oryza sativa L.) co-exist. Although originally it was thought that interspecific hybridization is impossible without biotechnological methods, progenies of hybridization appear to occur in farmer fields.

The Jeypore tract of Orissa, India is famous for the genetic diversity of Asian cultivated rice and has been considered the center of origin of aus ecotype. The landraces or traditional varieties growing here are thought to harbor dominant genes for biotic and abiotic stresses, aroma and palatability and hold promise for their utilization in future plant breeding and biotechnology programs.

THIS is the variety of rice without which biryani, the royal gastronomical delight, would not feature so prominantly in the history pages on Mughal influence in India. Aromatic, long-grained, nonsticky are the words that describe it. It is the Basmati. India grows 1.6 million tonnes annually. Two-thirds is exported every year. India claims its traditional knowledge of the climate, the

Surinder Sud / New Delhi September 22, 2009, 0:49 IST

Maize scientists plan to promote production of seeds of single-cross maize hybrids to boost the output of the nutritious and versatile coarse cereal for domestic consumption and exports.

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Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Dibrugarh organised a farmer-scientist interaction-cum-awareness programme on August 26 as part of the technology week from August 24 to 29, in the conference hall of the district agriculture office, Dibrugarh.

Plant growth promoters are naturally produced molecules that increase crop yield. Developing them for commercial use is difficult. The Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (CIMAP) received a US patent in May, this year, for developing a promoter, isolated from a medicinal plant. Anil Kumar Singh, Deputy Director of the chemistry division, spoke to Savvy Soumya Misra An ongoing

ornithology Birds love noise The house finch and the black-chinned hummingbird are unaffected by noise pollution. In fact, they prefer to nest in noisier areas because it increases their chances of survival. A team isolated the effects of noise pollution on bird communities. For this they chose regions with natural gas extraction plants which contain noise-generating compressors. The

Pink bollworm (PBW, Pectinophora gossypiella Saund.) is a pest of economic importance in cotton producing countries. Earlier results of host-plant resistance to the PBW indicated races of Gossypium hirsutum L. and some wild species including Gossypium thurberi Tod. which are resistant to PBW. Hence prebreeding